Social Gets More Mobile in 2013

emarketer social mobileTwitter was designed as a method of delivering short, spontaneous messages to a group of friends. It worked beautifully with mobile because it allowed you to express your thoughts while things were happening.

“I just saw Brad Pitt at Starbucks.”

“These lunch truck tacos are incredible!”

And not long after, we had the ability to take and share pictures of Brad and the incredible tacos to back up on our story. Now, thanks to the rise in smartphones and tablets and the forethought of social network app makers, mobile is becoming an even bigger factor in the social media game.

As you can see from this eMarketer chart, social media users are slowly cutting down their dependence on the PC in favor of the mobile phone and tablet. There’s even been an increase in Internet-enabled TV, game console and ereader use – devices that aren’t well suited to updating Facebook.

News Feed Declines Have Studios Thinking Twice About Facebook

gangster squadA new article in the LA Times states that, “72% of movies and network TV shows experienced a drop in the number of people who saw new Facebook posts after the new algorithm launched.”

23% of studios said they saw a drop in engagement (clicking, sharing, commenting), even worse 45% of entertainment pages saw a drop in reach (number of people who saw their posts.)

Those are pretty big hits, especially when you consider the short marketing window for movies. Sure, you can start building up brand awareness a few months ahead, or up to a year if it’s a big property, but it’s those three weeks before, during and after the theatrical release that really count.

CES 2013 Kicks Off With ‘Born Mobile’ Keynote

Steve Ballmer, Paul JacobsWith a tagline like “Born Mobile,” I was expecting Qualcomm to use Bruce Springsteen as part of their CES 2013 keynote address, alas they went with Maroon Five, Guillermo del Toro, and Big Bird. Surely, an unprecedented mix.

The real star of the show was crazy Steve Ballmer, the CEO of Microsoft. Once he hit the stage, it turned into a late-night infomercial for the new Windows RT tablets. Those are the ones where the tablet snaps into the keyboard giving you the best of both worlds. They are nifty little machines, almost cool enough to worry my iPad.

The keynote host was Paul Jacobs of Qualcomm. His overreaching point was that mobile is now ingrained in our lives and it’s only going to expand from here. Already, 84% of people worldwide say that can’t go a day without mobile. He also noted that most people look at their mobile phone 150 times a day. Yowza.

Consumers Don’t Trust Reviews But They’re Swayed by Them Anyway

shandwick - consumer review 2Like most people who shop online, I pay attention to the reviews posted about an item before I make the decision to buy. It seems like the prudent thing to do except for one thing – reviews are notoriously inaccurate. I was looking at laptops last week and my first choice had reviews that ranged from “Excellent computer for the price” to “Piece of garbage” with little in between.

In the past week, I’ve seen a review on a book the reviewer didn’t read and I saw a DVD review where a woman gave it 1 star because she bought the wrong item. Add in all the phony, paid for positive reviews and you definitely can’t believe what you read. Still, a recent study by Weber Shandwick shows that 65% of potential consumer electronics buyers were inspired to consider a different brand after reading a review.

Hulu CEO Steps Down Without Answering the Question: Subscriptions or Ads?

hulu popular“I’ve decided to depart Hulu in Q1.”

Doesn’t get clearer than that. Jason Kilar, the driving force behind the online streaming service is leaving for parts unknown with hardly a rumor about why or where he’s going.

Kilar came to Hulu from Amazon and was instrumental in turning the company into a serious contender in the streaming game.

Kilar says in his departure post / email:

We have grown from a few hundred thousand in revenue in 2007 to generating almost $700 million in revenue in 2012 alone. We have created a video subscription service that is growing unusually fast, adding over 200K new subscribers in the past 7 days alone (a new record). We have proudly generated over $1 Billion for our content partners since we excitedly entered private beta in October 2007. Our video advertising service delivers world-class results and sets the pace for the industry. We have authored scores of inventions along the way.

YouTube Expands ‘Send to TV’ and Other Trends at CES

The 2013 Consumer Electronics Show is only a few days away and that means we’ll soon get a sneak peak at future of technology. There are rumors about 110 inch screens and new shapes for TVs. Dozens of new smartphones will be revealed, maybe even one with a screen you can bend! So cool – but why?

YouTube says they’ll be expanding their Send to TV option. I’m I the only person who didn’t know they had this?

To use the system right now, you need an Android phone and a Google TV. You navigate to the video you want to watch then click the TV button on the app. Zap, the video appears on your TV. You can then use your mobile phone as a remote control to pause, go forward and back, etc. You can also create a queue so the next video will begin playing on your TV as soon as the other one stops. Nifty.

Whodunnit? Hawaii Five-O Asks Fans to Choose the Ending in Real Time

Kapu (Forbidden)Interactive TV is something we’ve been talking about long before tablets and smartphones arrived in the home. My first marketing gig was with a company working on a remote control that allowed viewers to bookmark content related to the show they were watching. It was a multi-step, cumbersome process but at the time, it was the ultimate in TV interaction.

We have come so far, so fast.

On January 14, CBS will make TV history with the first, truly interactive episode of Hawaii Five-O. A college professor is found murdered and there are three suspects; his boss, his teaching assistant and a student who he busted for cheating. Which one did it? Depends on who the viewers pick.